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Christian    752

Barbarella #1 (by Mike Carey)-Well, this was certainly different for Carey. The scenes of lesbian sex were something that I can't remember from past Carey writings, although that's going to be expected in a Barbarella comic book, I suppose.

It ended up being quite good though. Carey managed to turn it in to a social satire about religious fundamentalism in that good 1980s comic book manner. Carey certainly puts more in to the book than sexploitation.

Klaus and the Crisis in X-Mas Ville (by Grant Morrison)-So....did Morrison really just have Santa fight Lobo?

(Yes, I know Morrison is returning to the Qliphoth theme here, but the alien really looked and acted a lot like Lobo.)

I found the story to be a bit of a mess, but still a mess in a good-Grant Morrison type of way, with enough worthwhile in the story to make it worth reading. There were certainly some problems with the plot though. It won't go down as a classic, much the same as the other Klaus books Morrison has written, but Morrison went a bit more crazy with this one than he had with his previous Klaus work as well.

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dogpoet    463

There was an offer of mutual muff diving in Lucifer when Mazikeen picked up a hooker with a slightly messed up face in order to sort out her resented prettiness, was there not?

(There might have been implied same sex sexiness happening in hindsight in Faker as well, but everybody had so much backstory in that, apart from the fake gooey guy, that I can't recall offhand.)

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Christian    752

Yeah, my memory of those sorts of smaller moments from earlier Carey comics is going to be lacking, since I haven't really read the Lucifer comic since I was picking it up monthly. I guessed there might be a moment or two I had completely forgotten.

Although, this was a lesbian sex orgy, but it was still lesbian sex for all the right reasons (Stick it to the man, ladies! Show the patriarchs who own those bodies!).

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dogpoet    463

To be fair, the Jean Claude Forrest (?) Barbarella comics from the '60s do have a bit of subversive satirical stuff mixed in with the softcore. I don't think they'd even let you write kids' comics or smut back then in France unless you shoehorned in a political gag or two, so Carey's probably being careful to balance both as part of the story. (She probably won't be threatening to melt somebody's face if they don't uncrucify an angel if Carey's doing the comics not the film, though...)

Just gone through this year's JLA annual, which I bought mainly to see how Kelly Jones would draw Lobo. The script is not as good as the artwork, sadly.

 

 

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I have no vested interest in Barbarella, the movie is such a distant memory for me that Jane Fonda in a catsuit having orgasms is about the sum total of my take-away from it.  I read the first issue for Carey's writing, and eh, it was certainly well-written but not really my cup of tea.  I don't know how well Carey tackles hard Sci-Fi, even with the satire bent, maybe I'm just too used to him as a fantasy/horror writer.  

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Christian    752

I find he's actually quite good at writing science fiction.

By the way, I would hardly call this "hard sci-fi". It's "soft social sci-fi", with the intent being to question religious fundamentalism and patriarchy in a satirical context....the point was certainly not to tell us about how space travel works, or what exactly would be involved in a surgical procedure as described being done to the citizens of that planet.

Anyway, yeah, his run on Ultimate Fantastic Four was amazing, and even his Ultimate Vision mini-series was worth a read, both books which focused heavily on sci-fi over fantasy/horror. I was surprised by how well Carey did in that genre, myself, as I thought of him as a fantasy-type writer and didn't expect his writing style would do well with sci-fi (see: Neil Gaiman).

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dogpoet    463

Maybe Ixnay's thinking of his SF work for 2000AD, which wasn't (unless I've forgotten something) as good as Carver Hale?

As for classifications, I'd call Barbarella old fashioned space opera, myself.

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Christian    752

Yeah, there does seem to be set-up for some space opera elements also, with talk of a war brewing between Earth and the theocracy planet.

The movie was certainly space opera.

This first issue seemed to focus more on the social aspects of the society than anything else.

Barbarella is definitely not hard sci-fi though.

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dogpoet    463

Anything with a galactic civilisation that seems to function (however slightly) is space opera. That's a given.

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On 12/8/2017 at 3:12 PM, Christian said:

I find he's actually quite good at writing science fiction.

By the way, I would hardly call this "hard sci-fi". It's "soft social sci-fi", with the intent being to question religious fundamentalism and patriarchy in a satirical context....the point was certainly not to tell us about how space travel works, or what exactly would be involved in a surgical procedure as described being done to the citizens of that planet.

Anyway, yeah, his run on Ultimate Fantastic Four was amazing, and even his Ultimate Vision mini-series was worth a read, both books which focused heavily on sci-fi over fantasy/horror. I was surprised by how well Carey did in that genre, myself, as I thought of him as a fantasy-type writer and didn't expect his writing style would do well with sci-fi (see: Neil Gaiman).

Fair point about "hard sci-fi", I stand corrected.  I was just using it as a blanket term for science fiction in general, but there definitely IS a difference as you pointed out, and I agree that Barbarella definitely fits into the "soft" category.  

I think my feelings regarding Carey's science fiction work is that I simply haven't read anything by him from that genre.  Stuff like Lucifer, Hellblazer, and the Unwritten are my main points of exposure to his writing.  I guess the closest he's come to sci-fi for me would be his X-Men work, but even that was twinged more in dark drama and horror than anything else.  I knew he had a run on Ultimate Fantastic Four, but as I'm as likely to read a FF book as I am to light myself on fire for the fun of it, I've not read it.

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Christian    752

Why the disgust with Fantastic Four, Ixnay? Is that all FF, or just the fact that the book has been so bad so often?

Because, when FF has the right writer, it is one of the best examples of the super-science genre out of all comic books.

Stan Lee and Jack Kirby is one of the quintessential mainstream comic book reading experiences.

I can understand if maybe you're one of those comic readers who find Silver Age books dated, and can't read them.

Then, there's the John Byrne run, the Mark Waid run, the Jonathan Hickman run (all must read!)....and when the regular FF book was nigh-unreadable for so many years, Mike Carey had a nice run on Ultimate FF which was far better than anything from 616-FF between the Waid and Hickman runs.

There was also an incredibly fun abbreviated Walt Simonson run (not sure if it's even ever been collected), and I'm a fan of the Gerry Conway run from the '70s, but yeah, outside of that, there's nothing else worth reading from the history of FF.

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dogpoet    463

I have a Fantastic Four: Visionaries of the first half of Simonson's run, but I have no idea whether they collected the rest of it or not. You'd think that would be perfect for one of those Epic collections they've phased out the Essentials for, as well.

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The Fantastic Four is just one of those concepts that has never managed to interest me, no matter how many times I've attempted to get into it.  I was a kid when Byrne was doing the FF, and though I read it off and on it wasn't something like Claremont's X-Men or Stern's Avengers that I was always excited to read; I tried Simonson's run, and outside of the "New FF" arc with Art Adams it couldn't hold my interest either.  I have the same feelings about the FF that I do about Superman and Wonder Woman: I get why people like them, sure, but they're just not for me.  :shrug:

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Christian    752

Man, I can't imagine anyone not loving this story from Simonson's run....It was what Grant Morrison on FF should have been like, instead of the middling and dull Fantastic Four: 1,2,3,4.

Fantastic Four (1961 1st Series) 352

 

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dogpoet    463

I was always puzzled that they insisted Morrison wrote a slightly tiresome "adult" Max FF series, rather than just letting him take over the main title for a story or two. Who was doing it back then, Claremont and Larocca? That was hardly a stand out run...

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Christian    752

Yeah, I'm pretty sure it was Claremont and Larocca at the time. Of course, Mark Waid took over the book after Claremont, and I am certainly not going to complain about getting one of the truly perfect iterations of FF.

Maybe Morrison wasn't interested in writing anything other than a mini-series, due to his commitment to writing X-Men. Besides which, while it couldn't have ended up any worse than the Claremont run, if Morrison was going to do "dark 'n' gritty" FF, instead of Imaginauts, it really wasn't a great loss.

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dogpoet    463

Well yeah, but at that point Morrison was obviously rather fed up of the whole dark'n'gritty thang, so that might have been imposed on 1234 by editorial in order to Max it up a bit, rather than being something he actually wanted to do with the FF, and it's not inconceivable that this is the reason that one wasn't up to the standard of his X men run and Marvel Boy.

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20 hours ago, Christian said:

Man, I can't imagine anyone not loving this story from Simonson's run....It was what Grant Morrison on FF should have been like, instead of the middling and dull Fantastic Four: 1,2,3,4.

Fantastic Four (1961 1st Series) 352

 

Is that the issue where Richards and Doom are skipping through time, and there's a counter letting you know which panels to read sequentially?  I did dig the hell out of that issue, simply for Simonson's fantastic storytelling gimmick.  Simonson probably came the closest to making me care about the FF, now that I think about it, because I liked his "Acts of Vengeance" 3-part tie-in arc as well.  And that "New FF" story with Wolverine, Spider-Man, Hulk, and Ghost Rider was flat-out brilliant.

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